The issues, prospects, and environmental concerns about drilling for offshore oil and gas are being seen in a different light than at any other time during the past decade. Exploration drilling on offshore locations is proceeding at a high rate, and environmental concerns, while recognized as real, appear to be a lot less worrisome than might have been predicted a decade ago. Part of the reason for the changes in levels of concern results from the close monitoring programs that have been in effect for the past few years. Paul R. Ryan of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution recently described exploration activities on Georges Bank: “We now have the results of the first year of monitoring, and, although eight wells are considered a minimal observational test, there were no biological changes in the benthic community that could be attributed to drilling activity.” (Oceanus, 26, 2, 1983). The U.S. Geological Survey studied the Georges Bank drilling activities as well. Barium from drilling muds was detected at the sites, but in decreasing concentrations at distances away from drilling rigs. There was no evidence that the discharges caused biological changes. According to Ryan: “Postdrilling concentrates of barium were found to be within the range of predilling concentrations measured at other locations on the Bank. Concentrations of other metals measured were low and characteristic of unpolluted, coarse-grained sediment in other Continental Shelf areas.”